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Huncovce Coat of Arms

   Huncovce, Slovakia

Database Comments
JewishGen Family Finder

Would you like to connect with others researching family in Huncovce? Search this database and plug in "Huncovce" in the town field.

JewishGen's All Hungarian Database

Just a note -- while this has a wonderful collection of information, as of April 2012, there are just a very few with a reference specifically to Huncovce.

JewishGen Online Worldwide Burial Registry (JOWBR)

In May 2011, Madeleine ISENBERG and Mikulas LIPTAK provided a list of 393 tombstones of people who were buried in the Huncovce's new Jewish cemetery. This cemetery has a well kept wall and an attractive metal fence, to help prevent vandalism.

All Poland Database

It's a one-stop shop!
The Jewish Records Indexing - Poland and JewishGen "All Poland Database" is a multiple database search facility, which incorporates all of the following databases: JRI -Poland, Yizkor Book Necrologies, JewishGen Family Finder (JGFF), JewishGen Online Worldwide Burial Registry (JOWBR), 1891 Galicia Business Directory, 1929 Polish Business Directory, 1890-1891 New York Immigrants from Poland, Austria and Galicia, JG Discussion Group Archives, SIG Mailing List Archives and much much more.

New York Public Library, Yiskor books.

The New York Public Library has a collection of Yiskor books, some of which are on-line and can be paged through. One can select a town from an alphabetic listing. As an example, clicking on letter "K" will result in all towns beginning with K. Kezmarok, a close neighbor of Huncovce, is actually listed with the spelling KESMARK. And clicking on that will give you the only book there, Toldot Yehudei Kezmarok v'hasvivaThe History of the Jews of Kezmarok and its Surroundings, by Mr. Shmuel Dov Gvaryahu-Gottesman, written in Hebrew.

In that book, Mr. Gottesman indicated that he hope to write a book about Huncovce, and as in some novels that give you a taste of what the next book might be, there are just a couple of pages at the end of that book about Huncovce.

Unfortunately, in this Yiskor category, there are no complete books for Huncovce, in this spelling or even for Hunsdorf. But keep in mind, as the Jewish population of Huncovce decreased with the permission to live in formerly unavailable towns, they began to move and settle in neighboring towns, such as Kezmarok.

Where did you or your family live?

Is the house still standing?

What did it look like then or now? Send us your photos!

Send us some interesting information or stories!

Journal/Travelogue of Charles OFFER, April 1 - July 22, 1888
San Francisco, CA to Huncovce, Slovakia and back!

In creating the Huncovce KehilaLinks page for JewishGen, I solicited input from people I had found who once had family from that town. In an e-mail from Stuart OFFER, January 31, 2012, he gave me the following background about his great-grandfather, Charles OFFER:

My family link to the Kesmarok-Huncovce area is my great grandfather, Charles Offer (probably Kalman Offer in the records), born in 1851, who emigrated to the United States, ca. 1866 and ultimately settled in San Francisco, California. In April 1888, Charles left San Francisco for an extended visit to Europe, principally to see his family in the Kesmarok-Huncovce area, returning to San Francisco in July. He kept a handwritten diary of his visit (in English), which includes descriptions of his travel to the area (Poprad, Kesmarok, Huncovce). I have a photocopy of the diary; I'd be happy to share it with you if it would be useful.

Of course, I'm very interested in whatever information you have on the OFFER (or variant) family in the area. Charles' parents were almost certainly Jozef Ufer and Gutel Pollak (Jozef is buried in the New Cemetery in Huncovce; his name is spelled variously in the records I've seen as UFER, UFFER, OFER, and OFFER).

From the photocopied pages Stuart sent me, I have done my best to transcribe a portion digitally (pp. 52-59) into a version that people might like to read on-line. My main focus was to see what he had to say about the town of Huncovce and some nearby towns that he visited at the same time. I have left most of his grammar, since -- let us not forget – English was not his first language! Sometimes I have inserted a word or two to help with reading the sentences. If something was unclear or unreadable, I have used ellipses (…) to indicate the missing word(s). I have also added some endnotes and references that I hope people will find informative.

Prior to page 52, here are some additional notes about how he travelled across the USA. Tearfully, he left his beloved wife, at the San Francisco train station, on April 1, 1888. He traveled by the Pullman Sleeping Car “with all modern improvements - electrical lights and electrical bells" across country.

His cross country stops, with calculated 3610 miles, by rail were:

He left Hoboken, New Jersey on the Steamship Eider, on April 21, and arrived April 29, Southhampton, England. Arrived May 1, 1888, Bremen, Germany, Left Bremen May 3 for Vienna, by train Left Vienna May 13, by train, for Hunsdorf (aka Huncovce)

Places he visited in Slovakia include: Poprad, Liptovsky Svaty Mikulas, Hunsdorf, Luchivna, Kesmark, Straczina.

He eventually returned to the USA on the Steamer Saale from Bremerhaven, July 11th (and even as he said he was “seasick for a week” he says of the Saale, "the finest steamer I have ever seen." ) He arrived back to Hoboken, July 20, 1888.

Thanks are due to Stuart OFFER for sharing this amazing travelogue with us, and seeing the impact of the visit from a native son, who had come from a land they barely knew anything about.

Charles OFFER marker

Tombstone Marker of Charles OFFER (1851-1910)

A lengthy biography of Charles OFFER is found on his record.

Diane REICH photographed his tombstone and has given kind permission to use it here.

Charles OFFER died July 10, 1910, in Salt Lake City, UT, where the family was living for a while, but he, his wife, and several family members are buried in the Salem Memorial Park and Garden, Colma, San Mateo County, California.

Other Personalities

Rabbi Adolf Altman

Rabbi Adolf ALTMAN

Rabbi Adolf ALTMAN

The following information was found from a book among those offered by Dan Wyman Books Judaica.

Altmann, Adolf. LEBENSKAMPF UND WELTANSCHAUUNG: WELTANSCHAUUNG: EINE ERKENNTNIS UND AUFRUTTELUNG. Frankfurt A. M , Hermon., 1932. Paper Wrappers , 12mo. 29 pages. In German. Altman (1879–1944) was a “rabbi, historian, philosopher. Born in Hunsdorf, Hungary, Altmann studied at the yeshivot of Hunsdorf and Pressburg, and graduated as doctor of philosophy from Berne University. An early follower of Herzl, he worked for the acceptance of religious Zionism in the face of hostility on the part of the Hungarian Orthodox rabbinate. He was a delegate to the First Mizrachi Congress in Pressburg, correspondent for Die Welt (1905) , and editor of the Ungarische Wochenschrift (1904). He served as rabbi in Salzburg (1907–1915) where he wrote the two-volume Geschichte der Juden in Stadt and Land Salzburg (1913, 1930) , which is still the authoritative work on the subject” (EJ, 2007). OCLC lists 3 copies worldwide (U of Amsterdam, Deutsche Nationalbibliothek, HUC). In very good condition. Scarce. (GER23-15) (ID #20321) $60.00.

More about Adolf ALTMAN: b. 8. September 1879 in Hunsdorf (Huncovce); d. June 1944 in Auschwitz.


Tombstone of Rabbi Yitzchak Ayzik Halevi BILLITZER, photo posted on the Hamodia website.

Rabbi Yitzchak Ayzik Halevi BILLITZER

Rabbi Yitzchak Ayzik Halevi BILLITZER, was the son of Rabbi Pinchas BILLITZER and his mother was Rachel, daughter of Rabbi Uri Lipman FRANKEL.

He was born in 1801 in Huncovce and attended the yeshiva in Huncovce.

Later, he married Esther, the daughter of Rabbi Moshe ROTH of Ginz-Ruszka. They moved to Nagy-Ida (i.e. Velka Ida) where he taught local boys. But after the death of the town's rabbi, Meshulam Lieberman in 1837, he became the chief rabbi of Nagy-Ida, for 50 years, until his own death, May 31, 1887, in Velka Ida. He is buried in the cemetery of that town.

He left various manuscripts that were published in a book, "Beer Yitzchak ("Yitzchak's Well"), after his death, by the husband of his granddaughter, Rabbi Tzvi REICHMAN. The latter succeeded his as the rabbi of Velka Ida. Rabbi Reichman is supposed to be buried next to Rabbi Billitzer.

Rafael Joseffy

Rafael Joseffy, pianist

Rafael Joseffy

Rafael Joseffy (July 3, 1852 – June 25, 1915) was a musician: a pianist, teacher and composer. He was born in Huncove, to Wilhelm and Czipore LANG, July 3, 1852, died in New York in 1915. See Wikipedia entry for Rafael Joseffy for more details. Here is his birth record.While he was born in Huncovce, he grew up in Miskolc, that appears to have been the birthplace of his mother, per his birth record.

Joseffy Birth Record


Excerpt from YIVO Encyclopedia: About 1800, Friesenhausen arrived in Hungary, where he served for a time as dayan (religious court judge) in the northeastern community of Unsdorf (Hunfalva, Huncovce) before moving to Pest. In 1806, he submitted a memorandum to the authorities proposing that rabbinical seminaries be established in Hungary, Galicia, and the Bohemian lands — the first such proposal in Hungary. Talented young men would undertake for 10 years a curriculum primarily of Talmud, but also of Bible, humanities, and sciences, as well as physical exercise; candidates for the rabbinate would receive a fellowship. Within 15 years, only graduates of the seminaries would be elected to the rabbinate. The authorities deliberated long on the project but ruled against it in 1813.

Solomon WINTER

(from the Jewish Encyclopedia, 1906 Edition)

Hungarian philanthropist; born in the county of Zips, Hungary, in 1778; died at Hunsdorf, in the same county, Feb. 24, 1859, after laboring for sixty years for the advancement of the Jewish race in his locality. The erection of the synagogue in Hunsdorf about 1820, and the construction of the school in 1840, were due to him; and he was a representative of the collective communities of the county in the Budapest congress of Jewish notables.

Wurzbach, Biographisches Lexicon, lvii. 81;
Rosenberg, Jahrbuch für die Israelitischen Cultursgemeinden, i. 330.

Another source about Solomon Winter.

 Compiled by Madeleine Isenberg
Created 19 April 2012
updated 17 May 2020
Copyright © 2012-2020
Madeleine R. Isenberg
All rights reserved.

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